My Heart's Home

February 19, 2011

The Love Boat

Filed under: Faith — My Heart's Home @ 2:21 pm

French Sculptor, Julien Berthier, sails a sinking ship. In fact, its been across the English Channel and even toured around Europe.

Call him crazy, but I call him clever.

His boat sculpture, built in 2007, resembles a capsizing ship. It’s called “Love Love” and I love, love it!

The 35-year-old artist (and trickster) adapted an abandoned yacht into a 21-foot sculpture that is actually sea worthy. He cut the original boat in half, sealed it with fiberglass and fitted it with two motors. Despite the capsizing look, he claims it’s safe and easy to maneuver. It now sails at a 45 degree angle, which has passers-by and dutiful seafarers doing double-takes.

It’s a mind-boggling scene. A relaxed sailor at the stern of what appears to be a boat heading to a watery grave. (I’d like to place a fishing pole in his hands to add even more bafflement.)

Berthier often alerts coast guard and harbor masters about his sculpture to alleviate any unwarranted rescues resulting from distressed callers. Jaws drop as minutes pass and the boat is still afloat.

“Love-Love”, like much of his oeuvre, is a masterpiece. It’s impressive, poetic and humorous. His purpose in creating this art of fiasco is to “fix an object at the moment of its deregulation.” The sinking ship image is a metaphor signifying death, lost hope and sinking dreams. (That’s like an anchor: deep.)

All I know is it makes me smile.

Especially when I see the photo below of “Love Love” docked at a boat slip alongside hundreds of other normal-looking boats. It stands out. One quick glance and no question which boat is his. (Maybe I should make a sculpture of my SUV like this. Never again will I scratch my head asking, “Where the heck did I park this time?”) I love how it rises above the crowd, is one-of-a-kind, distinguishable from the rest. Not boring, camouflaged or status quo. It can’t be overlooked, dismissed, averted. It commands attention, raises eyebrows, beckons curiosity. Why? Because it’s different from the pack.

How many of us dare to live our Christian faith this way?

'Love Love' is shown alongside boats in a harbor.


“…so that you will prove yourselves to be blameless and innocent, children of God above reproach in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you appear as lights in the world,” Phil. 2:15

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind.” Romans 12:2

“In the same way let your light shine in front of people. Then they will see the good that you do and praise your Father in heaven.” Matthew 5:16


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